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Same-Sex Marriage and Same-Sex Partners in Connecticut
Same-sex couples face a myriad of legal issues, whether attempting to defend their relationship, expand their family through adoption, deal with complex tax conflicts between state and federal laws and many other concerns. At Greenberg & Krieger LLP, our Connecticut same-sex marriage lawyers stay abreast of the constantly evolving laws in Connecticut and across the country with respect to same-sex partners, same-sex parenting and same-sex marriage. Clients benefit from our nearly six decades of combined experience and our aggressive determination to protect the interests of clients in each case.
Our Stamford and Greenwich same-sex marriage lawyers represent individuals and couples with all family-related legal issues, such as:
- Adoption and family planning
- Dissolution of a same-sex marriage
- Same-sex parenting and child custody issues
- Child support and spousal support/alimony
- Property disposition
- Tax considerations under the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)
How the Interplay of Connecticut Gay Marriage and Federal DOMA Laws Affect Same-Sex Partners
While Connecticut law approved gay marriage in 2008, the federal law — the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) — still defines marriage as being between one man and one woman and further prohibits any federal recognition of same-sex partners who were legally married at the state level. With conflicting state and federal laws, gay and lesbian couples face complex legal matters whether defending their marriage or attempting to obtain a dissolution:
- Same-sex marriage: Although same-sex marriage has been approved in Connecticut, same-sex couples must still take proper steps to protect themselves. Under the current federal law, same-sex spouses cannot file jointly on their federal tax returns and cannot benefit from any of the federal tax protections offered to traditional married couples. This can affect the couple’s lifetime planning with respect to investment planning, retirement planning and other legal matters.
- Same-sex divorce: Same-sex spouses seeking dissolution face many of the same decisions during divorce — property division, custody determinations, support decisions and other legal issues. Unfortunately, these issues are complicated by the fact that state and federal laws conflict. For example, it may be difficult to obtain court enforcement of a Connecticut child support or spousal support order in another state. The tax implications in support and property matters must be even more closely examined, particularly when one spouse must make a property transfer to the other. Property exchanges, which are exempt from federal taxation for heterosexual couples divorcing, are not exempt for same sex couples. Alimony paid to a same sex partner is not deductible from the income of the paying spouse whereas it is deductible for a heterosexual couple in divorce
- Same-sex parenting: Same-sex couples face legal obstacles in parenting matters whether they are married, unmarried or divorced, particularly in cases involving relocation to another state.
- Surrogacy: There is a new surrogacy law in Connecticut. Surrogacy is an issue in many marriages but is always an issue when same sex partners choose to become parents in some means other than a straight adoption. With donor eggs and donor sperm and surrogate mothers, the issue of who can assert parental rights is becoming more and more important to the gay community. The lawyers at Greenberg & Krieger LLP can help same sex parents wade through the issues of surrogacy and genetic parenthood.
Stamford Lawyers for Same-Sex Partners and Same-Sex Parents
Our Connecticut same-sex marriage attorneys at Greenberg & Krieger LLP are passionate about helping our clients when they are confronting complex legal concerns. We understand the obstacles gay and lesbian couples are presented with and we pride ourselves in our ability to effectively address and resolve legal matters in marriage, partnership, parenting and divorce.
From our offices in Stamford, Connecticut, our lawyers represent same-sex couples in family law matters in Stamford, Greenwich, and other communities throughout Fairfield County. Call us or contact our family law firm by e-mail for a complimentary initial consultation with an experienced attorney.